Learning about the Brain: A Look Backward and A Look Forward

A Look Backward:

Recently, we completed our chapter by chapter review of The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge M.D. Since then I learned of this short video clip inspired by this book. Enjoy:


A Look Forward:

Now we will begin reviewing chapter by chapter, Brain Rules by Dr. John Medina.

In April, 2010 I was introduced to this book at a training session led by Dr. John Medina in Tacoma, Washington. He is a developmental molecular biologist and research consultant. Further, he is an affiliate Professor of bioengineering at the University of Washington school of Medicine and director of the Brain Center for Applied Learning Research at Seattle Pacific University in Seattle, Washington.

In the introduction, Medina tells us about a group of individuals who have the ability to do amazing things in spite of their IQ of 50 or less (with 100 being average). With an average IQ – more or less—we can do many things these individuals cannot, but we cannot do these specific things. These “savant” abilities amaze us, but even what we call “normal” demonstrates the amazing abilities of the brain. I am reminded of Psalm 139 that tells us that “we are fearfully and wonderfully made, who can know it?”

We are learning more and more of God’s handiwork and yet, we will never understand it all in our life in this world.

While Medina shares our awe of our marvelous brain, he looks to the “evolutionary process” as the source. However, as a great scientist he does have a powerful sense of observation and we can learn from him. He states his goal for the book well:

“My goal is to introduce you to 12 things we know about how the brain works. I call these Brain Rules. For each rule, I present the science and then offer for investigation how the rule might apply to our daily lives, especially at work and school. The brain is complex, and I am taking only slivers of information from each subject – not comprehensive but, I hope, accessible. The Brain Rules film, available at www.brainrules.net/dvd , is an integral part of the project.”

We will go through these rules one-by-one.


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